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office +27(0)11 434-0262
cell +27(0)83 308-0731

mail:    deon@sastainless.com
sawaterjet@gmail.com 

WaterJet Technology

 
water_vs_laser_pic

History

In the 1950s, forestry engineer Norman Franz experimented with an early form of water jet cutter to cut lumber. However, the technology did not advance notably until the 1970s when Mohamed Hashish created a technique to add abrasives to the water jet cutter. This and other concepts allowed Yih-Ho Michael Pao to develop commercial "ultrahigh-pressure WaterJets and abrasive-WaterJets into better tools for industrial cutting, drilling, and milling, especially for the flexible factory automation." Today the water jet is unparalleled in many aspects of cutting and has changed the way many products are manufactured. Many types of water jets exist today, including plain water jets, abrasive water jets, percussive water jets, cavitation jets and hybrid jets.

waterjet_progress

Operation

The cutter is commonly connected to a high-pressure water pump where the water is then ejected from the nozzle, cutting through the material by spraying it with the jet of high-speed water. Additives in the form of suspended grit or other abrasives, such as garnet and aluminum oxide, can assist in this process.

 
how_it_works_diagram

A diagram of a water jet cutter:
1 - high-pressure water inlet
2 - jewel (ruby or diamond)
3 - abrasive (garnet)
4 - mixing tube
5 - guard
6 - cutting water jet
7 - cut material

 

More

In addition to no heat-affected zone, the benefits and applications for WaterJet technology are limitless and ever-expanding. In comparison to other cutting technologies:
  WaterJet Plasma Laser  EDM
 Process Erosion
process:
high speed
 liquid
sandpaper
Burning / melting
process using high
temperature ionized
gas arc
Melting
process
using
concentrated
laser light beam 
Erosion
process using electrical
discharge
Materials

Any material.

Primarily steel,
stainless steel and
aluminum.

Primarily steel,
stainless and
aluminum.

Can also cut a
variety
of other materials.

Conductive
materials only.  

 Thickness

Up to 24 inches,
virtually any
material.

Z constraint
is only
limit to thickness.

Up to 2-3 inches,
depending on
material.

Generally 1 inch
or less,
depending
on
materials.

Generally 12
inch or less.

Part
 Accuracy
Up to .001"

Up to .010" 

Up to .001" 

Up to .0001" 
Machine
 Setup

Same setup
for all
materials

Same setup
for all
materials

Different
gases for
different jobs

Different
wire types for
different jobs

As the grid above illustrates - WaterJet cutting technology has clear advantages over other cutting methods.